Memorial University and Marine Institute to Host Discussions on International Higher Education Reform
Thursday, August 21, 2014

Dr. Rob Shea

Delegates will be arriving in St. John’s next week to begin three days of discussions on how universities around the world can help student’s access post-secondary studies, transition from study to work, and integrate their education with their professional, personal and civic lives.

The 11th International Workshop on Higher Education Reforms will be hosted by the Marine Institute and Memorial University’s Faculty of Education and on the St. John’s campus from August 25 – 27.

Workshop Chair Dr. Robert Shea, Marine Institute’s associate vice-president (Academic and Student Affairs), expects the issues surrounding reforms and innovations in post-secondary studies will drive a diverse conversation that transcends international borders.

“We are all united by the issues affecting higher education’s greatest resource - our students,” said Shea. “We expect this gathering of researchers, policy analysts and policy makers will engage in productive analysis about the complex array of reforms that are challenging the policy and practice of higher education throughout the globe.”

Previous workshops have taken place in Austria, Japan, Ireland, China, Mexico, Germany, the United States and Slovenia. This is the first time the workshop has been held in Newfoundland and only the second time in Canada.

Shea says there has never been a time that preparing our students for life, work and civic engagement has been more significant. “As the relationships between higher education, labor markets and employment systems are changing there are now many new institutional innovations, programs, forms of learning, and transition mechanisms for lifelong learners, from employment and domestic and civic duties back into higher education,” said Shea.

The workshop is co-sponsored by the Higher Education Special Interest Group of the Comparative and International Education Society (CIES); the Canadian Society for the Study of Higher Education (CSSHE); and the Centre for Policy Studies in Higher Education and Training of the University of British Columbia at Vancouver, Canada. More information on the workshop can be found at